Barry Larkin Collection 679: 2002 Donruss Fan Club - #98

Barry Larkin
Year:  2002
Brand:  Donruss Fan Club
Card number:  98

One of the fun things about writing up each and every Barry Larkin card in my collection is that I get a chance to take a closer look at a lot of sets that I otherwise would have either ignored or never even known about.  The 2002 Donruss Fan Club set is a perfect example of a set that I knew nothing about prior to receiving this Larkin card.

Back in '02 (actually December of 2001), Donruss released their Fan Club set - but not in a normal way.  Instead, they went all sorts of convoluted, but rather than me try and explain it here's the write-up on baseballcardpedia:
2002 Donruss Fan Club/Best of Fan Club is a 325 card set released in two series. The first 300 cards were issued as part of the Fan Club/Best of Fan Club products which were released in December, 2001.
Donruss created two versions of Fan Club: "Fan Club" which was exclusive to retail outlets, and "Best of Fan Club" which was Hobby only. While the retail Fan Club was printed on regular cardstock, the Hobby Best of Fan Club was printed on foilboard. It is best to think of Best of Fan Club as a Topps Chrome-like parallel-brand of Fan Club.
The last 100 cards in both Fan Club and Best of Fan Club were short-printed; however, only the Best of Fan Club subsets were serial-numbered. In addition, each 20-pack Best of Fan Club Hobby box yields one autograph and one game-used card; while retail Fan Club does not make such promise.
The final 25 cards were randomly inserted into packs of 2002 Donruss The Rookies. Like with the regular sets, Hobby packs of The Rookies had "Best of Fan Club" foilboard cards that were serial-numbered, while retail had the regular "Fan Club," printed on cardstock and not numbered. Unfortunately, both The Rookies sets were mistakenly sequentially-numbered as cards #201-#225.

To make matters worse, the set also had a number of parallels (again, information taken directly from baseballcardpedia):

All 325 base cards are available in the following parallels.

  • Spotlight (serial-numbered to 100 copies; Best of Fan Club/The Rookies Hobby packs only)
  • Credits (serial-numbered to 100 copies; Fan Club/The Rookies retail packs only)
  • Die-Cuts is a partial-parallel of the first 200 cards in the base set and exclusive to retail Fan Club packs.
  • Collectors who attended the 2002 National Sports Collectors Convention in Rosemont, IL and opened a sealed Hobby box of 2002 Donruss Best of Fan Club Baseball would receive a special "National Convention" card. Each card is embossed (and not foil-stamped) with the 2002 NSCC logo and is serial-numbered to five. In addition to the 300-card base set, Chicago National parallels also exist for the Franchise Features insert.

Oh my.  By my count, I still need the "Best of Fan Club" foil board base card, plus the Spotlight (#/100) parallel, the Credits (#/100) parallel, the Die-Cuts parallel, and the 2002 National Sports Collectors Convention (#/5) parallel.  I guess I should be happy that Donruss didn't include Barry in any of its inserts or hits in the set - even with only one official card in the base set I still have my work cut out for me if I'm ever to complete the set of Larkin cards!